HSR operators boarding a morning shuttle bus to start the work day in December 2017 Credit: Joey Coleman / The Public Record

Hamilton’s approximately 900 public transit workers will vote this week on a new contract.

The weeklong strike ended Thursday, three days before the Grey Cup.

The post-strike deal is similar to the City’s October “Final Offer“, with a one-time one-year health spending account increase, an increase to tool allowances for skill trades, increased bereavement leave, and the retention of operator shuttle buses.

Union members will receive a $750 signing bonus if the contract is ratified.

During the weeks leading up to the strike both the union, Amalgamated Transit Union Local 107, and the City of Hamilton stated wages were the critical issue.

Last week’s press conferences from both sides focused on the wage issue.

In this context, it is surprising the tentative agreement sees no movement on wages.

No Changes To Wages

The tentative agreement wage offer is the same as the offer the City made before the strike.

The wage increase is the same amount that CUPE 5167 accepted in its contract: 3.75 percent for 2023, and 3 percent in 2024, 2025 and 2026.

HSR transit employees health care spending accounts will be $2000 in 2024, a one-time increase of $1000. Spending accounts will return to $1000 in 2025.

Ratification Vote Pending

ATU members must ratify the contract. Workers have sought stronger contract gains after the pandemic and inflation.

Recent talks between the Detroit Three auto companies (General Motors, Ford Motor and Stellantis, the parent company of Chrysler) and the Canadian auto workers resulted in new contracts with the most significant gains for workers in decades.

Despite a good contract, strongly endorsed by union leaders, Canadian Ford auto workers barely approved their new contract with a 54 percent ratification vote.

Public Support as a Voting Consideration

HSR workers enjoyed good public support during their one-week strike.

Public sentiment on social media platforms was sympathetic to worker demands for wage increases similar to what the City of Hamilton gave to its managers and non-union workers.

City Hall took an aggressive communications posture against the Union, accusing it of spreading “misinformation” and “directing public anger at an individual female employee of the City of Hamilton” because the Union noted the pay increases given to the City’s lead negotiator, the Executive Director of Human Resources.

What would be the public sentiment if HSR workers reject the tentative agreement recommended by their union executive?

Production Details
v. 1.1.0
Published: November 20, 2023
Last edited: November 20, 2023
Author: Joey Coleman
Edit Record
v. 1.0.0 original version
v. 1.1.0 CORRECTED headline. One-Time Increase to Benefits, original stated wages

7 replies on “Hamilton HSR Tentative Deal: No Changes to Wages, One-Time Increase to Benefits, Shuttle Buses Retained”

  1. When do the drivers vote on the offer? If they strike again will the public have a few days grace to look for alternate transportation like before

      1. It’s a complete joke and its vote day but looks like even if there was more for strike again union won’t let that happen.
        The union failed the employees on Atu107 they finally had a chance to fight and they threw it away for a bogus contract. SAD SAD Who cares if ur out for months fight! Isnt that why they went on strike in the first place.
        Didn’t really give them anything when they were pumped up for increases to strike but they keep a shuttle bus nothing gained when u hadn’t lost it yet… Also signing against forcible vaccines or sent home no pay that’s disgusting.
        Whoppie $750 signing bonus for what the week pay they lost is a joke.
        Breavent more whoppie joke
        The whole contract is a joke but it was convinent right before greycup so who’s pocket was paid.

  2. If the details as outlined in the article are correct then this will go down as one of the greatest sellouts in labour history. It appears that the union leadership, has about as much spine as our city council which we all know isn’t much. How long have they been debating tiny houses for the homeless with absolutely no results.

  3. The results were that they cancelled them. Sure wish people would vote for change in elections instead of letting us stew in this bs…

Comments are closed.